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COLUMBIA, SC – Americans for Prosperity-South Carolina (AFP-SC) today urged Governor McMaster to veto $155 million in earmarks included in the state budget. According to the Post and Courier, the $155 million includes funding for nearly 230 pet projects from state legislators. A new Senate rule passed this year enables the public to see what legislators are allocating taxpayer dollars for earmarks, but unfortunately the House doesn’t have that same rule.
AFP-SC Interim State Director Candace Carroll issued the following statement:
“$155 million in pork and legislators’ preferred pet projects won’t help our state’s economy, small businesses, or families recover stronger from a year of economic harm and disruption. Instead of spending taxpayer dollars on well-connected companies and projects, legislators should give a portion of their tax dollars back to South Carolina families who can spend their money how they see fit.
“These earmarks will only incentivize more waste, fraud and mismanagement of taxpayer dollars that we have seen over recent years. We urge Governor McMaster to veto this spending and rein in fiscal mismanagement in Columbia.”
AFP-SC has been at the forefront of advocating for fiscal responsibility in Columbia. For the past two years, AFP-SC has advocated for a “checkbook” bill that would bolster transparency into the state’s finances and use of taxpayer dollars.
Reports have shown how local governments and the state government are rife with waste and corruption. According to a 2020 Inspector General audit, more than $43 million in taxpayer money was spent on earmarks over the previous two years, without proper reporting and public disclosure.
AFP-SC Blog: Online checkbook would help fight wasteful spending in South Carolina, 1/22/21